Question 3 on the Massachusetts ballot in 2012 proposes to allow marijuana to be cultivated and sold in Massachusetts for the use of qualifying patients. To qualify, a patient must have been diagnosed with a debilitating medical condition, such as cancer, glaucoma, HIV-positive status or AIDS, hepatitis C, Crohn’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, ALS, or multiple sclerosis. The patient would also have to obtain a written certification, from a physician with whom the patient has a bona fide physician-patient relationship, that the patient has a specific debilitating medical condition and would likely obtain a net benefit from medical use of marijuana.
I recommend a vote of YES in support of medical marijuana in Massachusetts.
My recommendation is based on several independent, but related, factors:
- Marijuana is medically beneficial to certain patients.
- This is a clear-cut states’ rights issue.
- The harm that might arise from the passage of this law is being exaggerated by its opponents, and the benefit from passing the law far exceeds any potential harm.
- I support the lessening of restrictions on marijuana in general, and medical marijuana laws in other states have led to a change in attitude about marijuana and a better understanding that it is far less harmful than most other illegal drugs and deserves to be treated differently.